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I'm Torn In Two

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ruthandsam | 11:21 Sat 04th Oct 2014 | Family
35 Answers
Last night my husband left me and announced that he would not return to our home unless my 22 year old son moved out.

I feel ripped apart. My son has many issues and is seeing a counsellor for treatment. He was abused as a child and it was just the two of us for 10 years.

My husband and everyone else says that S (son) is manipulating me and that I should ask him to leave. His typical day is lying in bed until 3.00 pm and going to bed at 5 in the morning. He then spends an hour showering and getting dressed. He will help out with child minding duties, do his own washing, buying and cooking for himself.

As part of S's problem, he hoards things in his bedroom. His counsellor says that it is because of the sexual abuse, etc.

My husband is at the end of his tether with the atmosphere in the house. He sees S as a lazy, good for nothing man who refuses to get a job.

I tried to explain to hubby that when you've seen your son self harming, wanting to die and in complete despair it is very hard for me to let go.

Advice required please. Maybe I am just too soft on my son but hubby adamant that I choose between S or him!

Please can you advise me what to do?


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Great idea until the neighbours report you to the council
I think - and I know my opinion isn't much, but, you're son is in a deep depression by the sounds of it, and no matter what people say, depression is taboo yet takes so many lives. I don't think your son is manipulating any situation, he's depressed and I wonder if he had an 'acceptable' illness would people be more tolerant, good for you for standing by your son regardless of his age. He's getting the counselling and what more can he do, he had a bad start in life and needs support. So his sleep pattern is a mess, it will take a long time a plenty of tlc, that I believe you're giving him. He sounds a good lad and his sister loves him. Maybe it's a man thing, they can't handle emotional issues..I could be wrong, even lambasted for saying so. I don't think your hubby moved out because he no longer loves any of you, it's probaby to get his head round what's going on really. I know it's heartbreaking to see a family member self harm and wonder would he have moved out as quick had it been his daughter. I do hope all gets sorted soon, maybe invite your hubby to a family counselling service - if there is one, so he can see the bigger picture. then come home and support ye
Whilst I understand how stressful it can be for your husband to have a family member who is suffering and not behaving in ways you would like them to, the bottom line of everything is you are a family and imho a partner should never give you an ultimatum to choose between them and another family member (especially a child). I think that is plainly just wrong whatever the scenario. Your husband needs to have a good think about his own behaviour and the impossible situation he is putting you in.
kvalidir - that's what I was trying to say..thanks
Would the husband be so quick to walk out if it were his daughter experiencing difficulties?

A temporary break from the family home may help H to realise where his obligations lie.
Well I hoe he returns soon and doesn't leave georgiesmum with that ultimatum regardless ht4361
^^hope tsk
oops I even got OP wrong, it's ruthandsam -sorry :(
Question Author
Thank you all so very much for replying.

I had a family meeting on Saturday and every single person said that S was manipulating me. Many painful examples were given. In the end I asked S to go and stay with his Nan for a while (which she was more than happy with) and then S said he wanted to go to hospital as he didn't feel well (as predicted by sister in law). The psychiatrist on call gave him the all clear and to follow up with GP which he is doing.

I've seen S everyday and he is obviously a bit overwhelmed by it all but is happy.

My daughter now has a proper routine and is more relaxed at home. The atmosphere is much better without the arguing, and hubby has returned home. S knows we love him very much and that I will help him all I can alongside the PTSD type counselling he is receiving.

It's not ideal but at least S and I can have conversations and our time together is special and without upsetting OH and/or our daughter. It's also given S some breathing space without him having to pitch in to child mind our daughter. That was a particular problem as OH and I have differing 'parenting' style to what S had. This was confusing for our daughter.

So all is 'well' and the situation will be reviewed in a few weeks time.

Thanks so much for your advice which is gratefully received!!!


S is comfortably settled at his Nan's house,
Glad a way forward was found.
Best of luck for the future.
Glad to hear that things have worked out for now. Best of luck ruthandsam. You sound a very kind and caring person.
Hope all continues well for you and all your family.
I can only imagine how you must be feeling, being torn between your maternal instinct and your love for your husband. How do you feel about the ultimatum that he's given you?

I guess that your approach to you son must be consistent with that of his counsellor's, which must be hard for you. People don't always sort out their problems from being given advice, they are experts on their own lives so working it out for themselves is sometimes best and that's probably the counsellors approach.

He's locked into a routine. Have you thought about disrupting his life gradually, encouraging him to change? For example if he's on the internet a lot you could limit his access through your router; disallow cooking his own meals some of the time, helping him to engage with the family normally.

Have you considered encouraging him to speak to the "Samaritans"? They offer a round the clock service which employs similar techniques that your son's counsellor uses.

Don't forget self interest. I hope things get better for you soon.

Take care.
If somebody really loves you, they would NOT give you an impossible ultimatum.
From my experiences I think the bond which tie a mother and child are unbreakable. Except in extreme circumstances I'd side with your son - they're an extremely rare breed while partners are two a penny.

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